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Us 23, Copenhagen 17, Dr. Wilson 13, America 10, Virginia 7, Fcc 7, Cuba 6, Pryor 5, Sec 5, Reid 5, Washington 5, Mr. Gary 3, Max Baucus 3, United 3, U.n. 3, Nickelodeon 3, United Nations 3, New York 2, Baucus 2, Nevada 2,
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  CSPAN    U.S. House of Representatives    News/Business.  

    December 21, 2009
    5:00 - 8:00pm EST  

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when he was only three, such as build her own computer from scratch in the early 1990's during the worst part of the special period. they know what they're doing. she and others have cell phones. they have twitter accounts. .
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>> it is actually someone who çl(!%m netd and solidarity of people working with them to try to oppose these things is really important. that would be how i would address that. although, more technical answers could be given. prominent dissidents last week and they were telling me that cell phone use is still costly for the average cuban.
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when the government opened the consumer sales of cell phones, for example, they were charging [ytsjgnn $160. that is a lot of money for cubans. there were telling me also, for example, that the guard would charge you for incoming calls. @so many bloggers, a journalis, when you call them, they are send you an e-mail because the cost is still an issue. i think that still is limiting the use of devices in cuba. >> thank youñrñik9> fe)ek'iw3. a fascinating discussion. one of the things that signaled the imminent downfall of the soviet bloc was that the soviets
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will to crack down. i wonder whether the cuban government is losing its will to crack down. e/ñ4k[naiogxvy that put these people in the car and beat them up said, turn off your cellphone, you know, what you think you are doing? why didn't they just take it away? why don't they arrest these bloggers and put them in jail? m@"zóódzkúzn!lvw > i do not think so. jí[éax!?ep6u'0uy'oút always has had to keep the political control that it wants. there might be members of the people , you know, people who are
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questioning these things.
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>> a few other considerations on why they're having -- basically, have not cracked down yet on bloggers. i think the will is there, i agree, but i think one of the issues here is that most cubans do not read these blogs. they do not have internet access. so, the work of these independent loggers, -- bloggers, the impact of the work is basically international. it happened before with the independent press. you know, they are not so worried of two now because cubans do not have access to these blogs.
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at the same time and i will ask -- and i will ask them to develop this idea because it is his. you know, the cuban government is an old generation. they're not tech savvy or internet users, most of them. there is some generational disconnect this is another consideration. at the same time, these blotters -- these blogger are different from the journalists in the 1990's. they're not so politically motivated.
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they're not so confrontational. did not criticize the government harshly, but they examine issues that cubans face daily. the very critical, but not confrontational. this may be another aspect of the issue. but taking into account what happened with the independent press as they gain more authority, finally, the government decided in 2003 that it was enough and they launched a massive crackdown. i do not think this can be precluded. we may see a future that some of these bloggers will be sent to jail.
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>> just briefly on the generational disconnect, i think -- just a clear point that if there is any big political lesson that we can take away from internal politics in 2009 is that the old guard is still on top. castro is still running the country in his late 70's, and the no. 2 figure in the government is a i you're older than role -- is a year older than him. you have the dismissal of their people and i think there is clearly a mass of generational gap between the cuban leadership and its new generation that is coming up. and there is a technological gap as well. that being said, i think the cuban government has learned things relatively quickly. just one example, fidel castro is still frequently quoted by the international press by making statements on various issues, both domestic and
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international. and these statements are principally made through his columns that he writes and posted on line. ñiwhen you read in the press tht fidel castro said this or that, these are just is online postings. yes, it appears in the print edition as well, but that is what makes it so easily accessible as well across the world. the cuban government has come to the game a little late, and they -- but they are a player and they're learning quickly. two more questions and will get a quick response before close. we will start here. >> i am from the german press agency and i was working in cuba and tell april -- until april. i would say i agree with you on that fidel castro and it's been said that he is the first independent journalist and daughter -- blogger because
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sometimes he writes just online. but i would not underestimate the spread of the bloggers because as you said, there are many ways for mistakes in the spread. i think the sign was that reynaldo, yanni's husband had something new and i think it is important that these bloggers are getting the views instead of just being shut down and blocking their blogs. with internet access, they get access through the cables, and i think that is why it is very expensive for them to have internet in cuba, and also on cell phones. but on the other hand, how do they explain that recently that
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a band of bloggers to get access to the hotels. that was something that was the complaint, that they could not get its at the hotel's, which was important for cubans who could not pay more than $5 an hour. >> let's take one more question. >> i wonder if you can't comment on -- there was an interesting point raised about the ever increasing context between the diaspora and the island. and now we have these e-mails, an electronic communication and the liberalization of travel as well. you mentioned only 13% have access to the internet. my impression is that even if there is only that small direct access, it is incredibly wide spread through e-mail, people
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pass these things around, people appear their shack -- share their passwords not just as a business -- they can sell them -- but my impression is that it is far wider for this. that may be why you are beginning to see things like this. as long as the bloggers are a small elite, the cuban government has always allowed the intellectual elite a certain amount of freedom. it is good public relations abroad. it is a safety valve. if this is beginning to spread to the wider public, and i would imagine that is, that is when you would begin to see a crack down most likely. i wonder if you could comment about the diaspora's role in spreading the blogging community on the island. and if you agree with my impression on that. >> i will try to be quick so everyone can get a chance. let me address a couple of these things. the first is related to all three comments.
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i have heard from cuban diplomats and others that we were content to ignore these bloggers as insignificant elements as long as they stayed on line because then we can block them from cuban consumption. and these sites are largely filtered in cuba. sometimes you can access -- access them, but generally you cannot. but they have taken them to the street. they have increasingly been more provocative, confrontational. you could even say they're starting to act like citizens, meaning that they are taking this complaint to the street. the thing that you mentioned about rinaldo, he said i want to have a verbal duel with the man who beat up my wife and he set up a meeting and we will talk. i do not believe in violence, but we do need to talk about
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this and get an explanation. and of course, that was met with violence. i think as they become more courageous, or stupid, and do things in the street, do things that are in public -- and they have done that over the past year, year and a half, increasingly more confronting at an event, asking questions, going to the debate, being involved in various public things. there is going to be a reaction i think that as part of this transition from a virtual to a public plaza, a virtual voice to a public voice. i think of martin luther king. they always criticize him for making things uncomfortable, for causing a ruckus, for causing conflict. but he was trying to expose an unjust situation. they blamed him for being -- they blame her for being
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confrontational, but she only believe she is defending the rights of a citizen. in terms of family, that is usually important. there is a retro feedback. my wife is cuban and she is in contact with her family and friends in cuba through e-mail. you know, periodically, but constantly over time. and she can read something and send it to them or tell them about it or ask them about it. she is going to go in january and clearly going to try to avoid politics with her parents. but i'm sure that it will come out. i think that there's this feedback that happens. even if there is not so much feedback, these connections are very important because it destroys the myth that the outsiders, that the cuban americans are all these members of this mafia that want to kill us when you have relatives and friends are helping you to stay alive.
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>> briefly, the work of these bloggers cannot be underestimated, definitely. they have a huge impact abroad and they're having an impact in cuba. instead, as ted was saying, have become more confrontational as they have become more outspoken. they have this -- they have faced several restrictions, been summoned, and been denied visas to travel abroad. and in the one incident when one was beaten in daylight in the streets of havana. it is as i said before, something that we take very seriously and we are concerned that in the future it could bring more harassment of these bloggers as they become more outspoken. >> great, well, thank you very
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much. i would be remiss not to note that just this week that the american biologist launched its twitter account xcel that you can follow us on line. thank you very much. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] [cheers and applause] >> tonight on "the communicators" efforts to protect copyright infringement and piracy. but senate majority leader harry reid over the weekend secured the last of these 60 votes needed to move the bill toward final passage.
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last senate vote on the bill is expected this week. if it is approved, senate and house leaders will hold a conference committee session were the two bills will be combined. this is about 20 minutes. >> we stand closer than ever to making it possible for every american to afford to live a healthy life. never have we been so close to reforming america's broken health insurance system. we are not over the finish line. but we would never have gotten this far without the support of doctors, nurses, medical professionals who know we need action, not excuses anymore. excuses are not going to work. this legislation is not about politics or partial ship or some poll that appears in a newspaper someplace around the country. legislation is really about people. our guests today, dr. cecil
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wilson, the president-elect of the american medical association, knows this as well as anyone. he sees patients, patients come to him or are there to find out if there are things he can do to help them. he feels it every day. dr. wilson, to be a part of this great organization, must have a distinguished service record, and he does. we appreciate his support not only as a doctor of medicine, but his contributions to the military as a flight surgeon. for us to get the support of the american medical association is really important and really makes those of us who have worked on this so long have a bit of humility. in fact, a lot of humility.
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in the last several days, we have also received support from other organizations, the heart association, american diabetes association, american hospital association, the federation of american hospitals, the american cancer society, aarp -- notice i pronounced it right today. each of these organizations know the cost of inaction is too high. it will bring needed relief to millions and millions of americans who wake up every day without health insurance, or waking up every day afraid they will lose their of insurance. like those in the medical field, our responsibility as legislators is to care for all people, not just those that are fortunate. that is what this historic reform fixes. it starts breaking down the wall
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between a class of americans who can afford to stay healthy, and those that cannot. americans are dying from diseases we know how to treat, living in pain because it is too expensive to thesease. you have heard us talk a lot of the about this, but every day, doctors like dr. wilson see it. they do not talk about it. he sees it. they know a bill will soon be sent to the president that will save lives, save money, extend medicare for 10 years, and basically save medicare. doctor? >> well, thank you, senator reid, and thank you all for
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joining us today. i am cecil wilson, as you have heard, at the president elect of the american medical association and an internist is met in water park florida. the message i have to communicate with you today is of critical importance to the nation's physicians and to the patients would dedicate our lives to caring for. after a close and careful review, the ama is pleased to announce its support for passage of the amended health system reform bill. the senate bill includes a number of key benefits for meaningful reform. it will include improvements in choice and access to affordable health insurance coverage and eliminate denials' based on pre- existing conditions. it will then approve -- it will get rid of lifetime limits on
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health care coverage, as well as higher premiums based on medical conditions or agenda. these are important benefits for those who have insurance now and for those who want it, but have been unable to get it. america has the best health care in the world. if you can get it. but for far too many people, access to care is out of reach because they lack insurance and this is just not acceptable to physicians who provide high- quality care on an often fragmented system that does not work for them or their patients. this bill will increase coverage for preventive and while the scare that can lead to better disease management and prevention. it will further did -- for the development of research that will help doctors compare treatments and make better informed medical decisions.
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it authorizes grants to test alternative medical liability reforms that show promise in benefiting patients by reducing the impact of advance in medicine. over the past few weeks, the ama communicate closely with members of the senate about items we support and items of concern in the senate bill. that we are pleased that the management -- that the managers have addressed several issues. for example, the bill increases payments to primary care physicians and general servants -- general surgeons while no longer cutting payments to other physicians. it eliminates the tax on physician services for cosmetics to dree -- for cosmetic surgery and drops the enrollments proposed for medicare. passage of patient protection by the senate will bring us close to this and -- to the finish line on health system reform. there's still work to do, and the ama will continue to stay
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actively engaged throughout the conference process to further improve the final bill for patients and physicians. we will work to resolve issues of concern to physicians, such as the creation of the medicare payment board, quality improvement and medicare data release initiatives. in addition, physicians and advocates for baby boomers, seniors, and military families have also been engaged in efforts to fix the broken medicare physician payment formula that threatens access to care. we commend the senators reid and baucus for keeping the focus on a permanent solution to this problem early next year and will continue to work closely with them to get that solution. the ama is committed to health system reform that improves the system for patients and physicians to take care of them and we are pleased to be able to support passage of the amended
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senate health system reform bill. thank you. >> senator baucus? >> thank you, senator reid and dr. wilson. this is an historic moment, not only because of the legislation that is about to be passed in the senate, but also because of the statement that we just heard. there are many organizations who are endorsing this legislation essentially because they know is the right thing to do for america and hospitals know that, hospice, home health, pharmaceutical industry -- they all know it is good for our country. it is also a strike because there is another endorsement by the medical -- american medical association. that is very important to me that the american medical association is not opposing the legislation. rather, it supports it. and a word wants to keep working
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with the senate on issues that concern them. they mentioned payment physicians to doctors -- payment to doctors. it is that attitude of saying yes, this is good, this is good for the country, but also we want to keep working with you. is that attitude of working together to try to find a common solution which means so much to me and is not found, regrettably, in the senate in the last several weeks. but here are groups that are not part of the senate and who want to do the right thing. it is especially important to hear endorsement from doctors. how strong, it is doctors to spend more time with patients than any other groups. they know what is needed. they know the problems of insurance companies denying
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payment. they know it is wrong that a person cannot get insurance coverage because of a pre- existing condition. they also know that it is wrong for an insurance company to recent a policy based on some minor frivolous health condition. dr. wilson also mentioned the importance of eliminating annual limits and lifetime limits on benefits. doctors know. doctors to see patients. they work with patients. and dr. wilson's statement also included all the reasons that many of us have given in the past, gosh, almost a year now. it's hard because of the legislation, but also because the ama has his work with taken a very positive statement, which i find comforting -- that is positive, and second, because it is honest in saying there are issues they will work with.
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but it is the attitude that they will work with us but i find very encouraging. where is dr. wilson? i thank you very much. >> let me just underscore the point made by leader reid and max baucus and dr. wilson. i suspect that if you can only have one organization or group of people to support this bill, the tories would probably make is the one you are hearing today. while it is important to have other organizations be supportive, there is nothing more fundamental when you get right down to this than the relationship between patient and a doctor. that is that the most fundamental level, whether or not you have access to the doctor, whether or not you have the resources to be able to compensate the doctor for his or her services. of all of the individuals and groups that have supported this bill, i read this one as the most important because it speaks to the relationship between patients and doctors. there are a number of provisions
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in this bill, you have heard some of them are to canada by leader reid and max baucus and dr. wilson. -- you have seen them articulated by leader reid and max baucus and dr. wilson. one of them was to make it possible for young men and women who desire to become physicians in our country be able to do so by reducing the costs. the scholarships, grants, loans in this bill make it possible for us to increase the work force. some estimates are the some 16,000 primary care physicians will be needed with the expanded numbers of people who have been health care. the ability of young men and women who have the strong ambition to be a health-care provider needs to be more accessible and less costly. one of the major provisions coming out of the health committee was designed to do just that. on behalf of my comment -- colleagues on the health committee, particularly senator carcanet -- senator harkin and
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senator bingaman, this is a very important moment. we're grateful for your support of this effort. it will make a huge difference in our country. >> dr. wilson, thank you very much for being here and for your great endorsement of this bill. some of you may know i was enabled the a aviator back in the 1960's. -- i was a naval aviator back in the 1960's. we always had good surgeons to care for us and i found out dr. wilson was a surgeon. we serve in the same area, although we did not know each other. and as i learned that, we were in good hands. no one knows their rafa system better than doctors. there are millions petco without proper treatment. they know the predicament -- there are millions that go without proper treatment.
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in a predicament -- they know the predicament. in of the lives and money that could be saved if we invested more generously in wellness and disease prevention. i thank you dr. wilson for pointing that out. i welcome the support of the american medical association. america's doctors have size of barbara and health care system and a prescription for a cure is to pass -- our broken health care system and a prescription for the cure is to pass affordable health care reform. this bill will enhance the doctor-patient relationship in many ways. for example, by cracking down on health insurance company abuses we will reduce the opera sureties for corporate bureaucrats to come between -- reduce the opportunities for corporate progress to come between a doctor and patient this will require -- this will reduce the required paperwork.
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this bill will significantly increase the number of primary care doctors, especially in rural areas and other underserved communities. we do this by grid the expanding the presence of community health centers and increasing the national health service corps. we also create a world health care professional pipeline which will give increased training opportunities to help professionals working in rural areas. i cannot emphasize enough how revolutionary is going to be to transition from our current sick care system to a true health care system. one that focuses on preventing chronic disease and keeping people out of the hospital in the first place, that is what doctors want to do. help people stay healthy. and now these preventive services will be paid for. again, i welcome the ama's support. america's doctors have made the right diagnosis and offered the rightñr prescription.
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pass the health care reform bill. but it will take a few questions. >> you have decided to several organizations as backing your legislation. the republicans, however, say you cannot have the support of the public. do you worry about political fallout? what i am more worried about an example been said by a party leader with something so obscene. -- >> i am more worried about an example being set by a party leader with something so obscene if you look at the morning polls, there are some polls that show the support of this bill is about about 10% overnight. think of the examples i gave on the floor last night. there was a boy born with legs
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just above his knees. at five years old, insurance company will not give him prosthetics. that is what this is all about. it is about physicians like dr. wilson been able to take care of people like caleb. i am disappointed that someone with a title that mr. steele has would be so crass and such a terrible example for the youth of this country. >> could you address concerns that the bill is chock full of pet projects for even some of you standing up there that were designed to benefit your states and also, perhaps, to secure the votes of wavering democrats? and senator dodd, -- >> i am happy to respond to this. we just completed a bill, $600
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billion for the defense of this country. you all know how difficult it was to pass that. when we were able to do that piece of legislation is we had to do a number of different compromises. as you know, that dealt with extending a safety net, food stamps, -- we were not able to put the child tax credit in there because senators did not want that. that is what legislation is all about. is the art of compromise in this great country of ours. nevada has many different problems than does new hampshire. michigan has many different problems than those georgia. we have wide ranges of different needs throughout this country. some of those are basic health care delivery problems. others are because of the employment situation. this legislation is no different than the defense bill that we
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just spent. we spent $600 billion on it. it is no different than other pieces of legislation, large and small, we work to compromise. there are 100 senators here. i do not know if there is a center that does not have something in this bill that was important to them. and if they do not have something in it important to them, then it does not speak well of them. that is what this legislation is all about. it is the art of compromise. >> just briefly, to talk about the grant program for construction, or roughly 14 states that qualify for that program, conn. being one. i am told there are 13 other states. it is to be determined by the secretary of health and human services. it is not anymore. it will be competitive. the states that decide to compete will get them. but it is completely competitive. it is not just involve my state. although, my state is very interested.
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pinecraft of the language of it and wrote in such a way that would include far more than just my state and make sure that it was competitive. it will be determined by the secretary. >> one more question. >> can you talk about the situation heading into the house now that this does seem likely for passage? >> first, let me say this, we have to pass this bill in the senate. that is our direction. that is our guiding light. the lore about next steps at a later time. we're going to finish this bill -- we will worry about next steps at a later time. we're going to finish this bill before christmas. right now, we are focused on what we're going to do this week. >> just to follow up on a previous question, can you explain why it is fair for nebraska and in particular to
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get -- for nebraska in particular to get the expanded coverage on medicaid cost? >> let me just say this, medicaid is a difficult issue. you will see in this bill different treatment of medicaid. why? the same reason i said earlier. nevada has -- we probably are the lowest health insurance state in the country. we have some means that other places do not have. we have problems dealing with primary care physicians. we're problems dealing with medicaid because of the low contribution rate that we have. we can go through this bill and talk about individual things for individual senators. we are happy with the bill that we have. >> do not forget, medicaid is a block grant program.
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it is up to states to design their own program. a different states have different designations. different states cover some populations. other states do not. some do-gooder states because they have gone a lot further than the federal minimums. each state is a lot different and in the interest of fairness and balance and equity, it does make sense for the position to even out some of the inequities that have occurred over time. >> thank you. >> today, president obama have -- praised the senate for moving forward on health care legislation in clearing the way for final passage sometime this week. the president's comments came during a time of effort to let savings on programs and services. he speaks for about 10 minutes. >> hello, everybody. good morning. before i begin, i want to say a
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brief word about the historic vote which took place earlier this morning. the u.s. senate knocked down a filibuster aimed at blocking a final vote on health care reform and scored a big victory for the american people. by standing up to his death -- to the special interests who prevented reform for decades, the senate has moved us closer to reform that makes a tremendous difference for families, seniors, businesses, and the country as a whole. for those who have insurance, reform will mean greater security and stability. no longer will people with pre- existing conditions be excluded from coverage. no longer will people who are seriously ill be dropped from coverage. and no longer will families be allowed to go broke because they are forced to pay exorbitant out of pocket expenses. many people recall the enormous rights -- the enormous fight
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around the patient's bill of rights that never got done. that is embedded in this bill and will make sure that all americans will be getting a fair deal from their insurance companies. small businesses and those who do not get insurance through their employer, will finally get insurance at a price that they can afford with tax credits to help. medicare will be stronger and insolvency extended -- its solvency extended by a nearly a decade. seniors will get more prescription drug costs than they are getting right now and finally, these reforms will help the inexorable and unsustainable rise in health- care costs that are overwhelming families, businesses, and the federal budget. the congressional budget office now reports that this bill will reduce our deficit by $132 billion over the first decade, and by as much as one -- as much as $1.3 trillion in the decade after that. i want to be clear for all of
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those that are continually harping about how this is somehow expanding government bill, this cut our deficit by $132 billion the first 10 years and by over $1 trillion in the second. that argument that opponents are making against this bill does not hold water. embracing this kind of responsibility in washington is also brings us here today. i am pleased to be joined this morning by the secretary of veterans affairs, rick shinseki, my budget director, peter orszag, and our special guest, last but not least, the winner of the first annual save award, and that is nancy thickener from colorado. she is a single working mom, a clerk with the v.a.
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she is an artist, and outdoorswoman, and an avid hunter. in fact, somewhere in the western united states, there is an elk that is breathing a sigh of relief because nancy is here instead of where she would have been, hunting with her kids. and i believe her children are here. where are nancies kids? there they are right there. it's great to see you guys. nancy's daughter, she skins and gets her health. [laughter] -- she skins guts her elk, so do not mess with her either. [laughter] business as usual in washington just will not cut it. we need a government that is more efficient, more effective, and far more fiscally responsible. when my administration walked through the door, the country faced a growing economic downturn as well as a deepening fiscal hold.
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washington has massive tax cuts for the wealthy and an expensive new entitlement program without paying for any of it. health care costs continue to rise year after year and little effort was made to cut wasteful spending. as a result, over the previous eight years, the national debt doubled. it doubled. in january, the deficit stood at 1.3 trillion dollars and we had to make the difficult decision to add to the deficit in the short term to prevent a potential collapse of our economy. but as i have said, in the long run, we cannot continue to spend as if deficits do not have consequences, as if waste does not matter, as if the hard earned tax dollars of the american people can be treated like monopoly money. that is what we have seen it time and time again, washington has become more concerned about the next election than the next generation. it has put off our tauruses
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spending bill after spending bill, budget after a -- has put off our choices spending bill after spending bill, budget after budget. in 2008, the amount of money spent on government contracts more than doubled. and the amount spent on noncompetitive contracts jumped by 129%. this is an inexcusable waste of money. that is why back in march, i ordered agencies and departments to come up with plans to save up to $40 billion per year in kondracke by 2011. over the past six months, agencies have been making cuts by looking for better deals and by a -- opening up no bid contracts to combative debate. because of these efforts, i am proud to announce that we are on track to meet our goals. 24 departments have identified more than $19 billion in savings for this year alone. and this is only the latest example.
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at my first cabinet meeting we outlined ways to make things more efficient and less wasteful. we found $17 billion in savings so far. we're also going after roughly $100 billion wasted on improper payments to contractors, organizations, and individuals. to put this in perspective, these mistakes, and in some cases of abuses, cost content -- cost taxpayers more than the budget for the education and home and security department combined. -- for the education department and homeland security department combined. i have insisted from the beginning that health care reform will not add one dime to our deficit, and as i have just noted, not only is it not adding to our deficit, it is actually reducing it. finally, i issue a challenge
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every man and woman who works for the federal government. if you see a way that government can do its job better, order the same job for less money, i want to know about it. -- or do the josame job for less money, i want to know about it. we have asked federal employees to submit reform proposals based on their experiences. and as a testament to the seriousness of which these folks are taking their jobs, we have received more than 38,000 proposals in just three weeks. four finalists were selected and put to an online 0. nancy is here because she won. her ideas stem from her experience at the v.a. medical center where she works. sheeler's that whenever patience left hospital, left over medications like eyedrops or in heelers were just thrown away, and often, veterans would have to go right back to the pharmacy to refill what was discarded. so, the v.a. is paying twice. it is waste, plain and support.
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and thanks to nancy and secretary shinseki and the folks at veterans affairs, we are putting a stop to it. of course, nancy's proposal was just one ofñr many great ideas that came to us. we have already begun to implement a host of suggestions made through the contest and while promoting the electronic pay stubs or scheduling social security appointments on line, or repurchasing government supplies may not be the most glamorous reforms in history, when taken together these small changes add up. they add up to a transformation of how government works. that is why we will turn the save award into an annual event. that is why we are holding a forum at the white house next month to seek more ideas from the private sector, specifically about how we can better use technology to reform our government for the 21st century. after years of irresponsibility, we are once again taking responsibility for every dollar we spend the same way families
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do. it is true that what i described today will not be enough to get us out of our fiscal mess by art -- by a itself. we faced some tough decisions in next year's budget and years to come to get it under control. but these changes will save at the american people billions of dollars and they will have to put in place a government that is more efficient, effective, and weighs less money on no bid contracts, cutting -- are rising more effective technology and serving the taxpayer. that is a government we need. that is the kind of government that i intend to implement. that is the kind of government that the american people deserve. and that is the kind of government that people like nancy are helping to build each day. nancy, congratulations. we are proud of you. thank you so much. we're very proud of your mom. [laughter] thank you everybody.
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>> and now, united nations secretary general ban ki moon on the climate change summit in copenhagen. he discusses the agreement reached between the united states and several large developing nations. this is about 20 minutes. >> i just came back yesterday afternoon after attending a climate change summit in copenhagen i have a press conference with your colleagues who are attending -- who were attending in copenhagen. today, i am pleased with -- pleased to meet with you, basically, to answer some questions that you might have. at last, did not have much time to answer questions. but i have a security council briefing at 10:00 when very
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important issues. let me say that the conference was a success. it marks a significant step forward. first, it commits countries to çówork to limit global temperature rise to below two degrees celsius. it has also said that they will review this commitment in 2015 to take account of new scientific evidence. i understand that the i.t. ct t -- i secttc will include a repo. second, it includes targets for a developing countries. again, this is an advance. third, countries have agreed on
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the importance of acting to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. this means you will finally -- we will finally have brought the source of -- will finally have blocked the source of nearly one-fifth of global emissions into the regime. fourth, it will provide comprehensive support to promulgate the climate change. fifth, the theory is backed by money and a means to deliver. you know that already. $30 billion has been committed in 2010 and after that, $100 billion annually up to 2020. i urge countries to be sure that the fund becomes fully operational as soon as possible. i urge all governments to formally sign on to the copenhagen accord by read -- by
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strengthening their support. the faster that we have all of the measures, the more momentum we can build. the decisions made in copenhagen were for fear in large part. the benchmarks of success that i had laid down in is a kemper 2009 summit meeting u.n. headquarters, admittedly, they do not yet meet the scientific bottom line to keep global temperature rise to below two degrees celsius in industrial levels. but without the commitment of the copenhagen accord, we could be facing the real prospect of temperature rises of up to six degrees celsius. during the coming month, i will continue my work with world leaders to increase their level of ambition. i have urged all to implement their commitments as soon as
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possible. and i would encourage them to directly engaged in achieving the global, legally binding climate change treaty in 2010 the hands on investment helped to seal the deal in copenhagen. we not only appreciate the importance of climate change, but that we are prepared to act. it is also notable that countries that have had previously stayed on the process, are now at the center of global climate action. as you move forward, will examine the lessons of the copenhagen conference. -- the copenhagen conference, we will consider how to streamline the process. we will also look at how to encompass the full context of climate change and negotiations substantially and institutionally.
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starting next year kauai will establish a high level panel on climate change to strategically address such issues. while i am satisfied that we sealed a deal, i am aware that the outcome of the copenhagen conference, including the copenhagen accord, did not go as far as many would have hoped. nonetheless, it represents an essential beginning. but we have taken an important step in the right direction. thank you very much. >> your assessment of the conference is quite different from many who have said it was a failure. they called it a disaster. i would like to ask two questions. the british prime minister has said that the conference was hijacked by a number of countries -- of countries. how you respond to that? secondly, a number of countries have said that it was a massive blow to the u.n. framework and that it became clear that these issues could not be agreed to by
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consensus and on the number of countries came forward with a deal which the others very grudgingly accepted. how you respond to those two questions? >> on the outcome of this climate change conference in copenhagen, basically, i believe that global warming member states believe that it was a success. it was a significant step forward to bring to a legally binding treaty as soon as possible. copenhagençó was, in fact, about finding a way for what? to deal with a huge problem, very complex, very difficult problems. the organization's took a long time positions of member states intrenched and it was a quite
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difficult process. we got a way forward that pushes all countries to take action. it is not perfect at this time, but it was very important and very sycophant as a step forward. this, as i said, we have been able to achieve all of the elements that we laid down at the u.n. headquarters into gambert. and the sec -- in september. and the second part of the question about being hijacked, i believe this accord represents almost all member states of the country's positions. of course, i understand that
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this element does not meet the full satisfaction of all of the countries. but we did not expect that we would be able to have this legally binding treaty satisfying all the elements to all the member states. but i think we did get what we need to make this process move on. there were some countries who expressed reservations. on procedural matters as well as the substantive matters. on procedure, because of the complexity and the very slow process of negotiation. . .
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they were all represented. in terms of representation, i thought that they were fully represented. i will admit there was some lack of transparency, because we were not able -- we had a lot for a difficult negotiation. for substantive matters, there are more to be done. in the course of our negotiations, we will make this
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globally acceptable in treaty form, and build up on the copenhagen approach. >> can you tell us what role you are able to personally play in facilitating the work of the 30 member states that you mentioned? and also behind-the-scenes, the deal that president obama helped broker -- it did not have any further financial information. to what point were you personally involved? >> i think everyone has played an important role. not necessarily myself. president obama played a very important role of the last meeting for this negotiation was stuck on important issues like
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verification issues and other mitigation target issues. he played a very crucially important role. for me, during the last three years i have been discussing this issue with world leaders. raising political awareness and trying to organize the political leadership role, and support for developing countries. particularly during this summit meeting as well as before this summit meeting, i have been closely connected with the chair of this copenhagen summit meeting, prime minister rasmussen.
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and the person elected as the president. in addition to this, i have been extending my network of consultation with many world leaders come a major world leaders as well as some the most vulnerable countries. the negotiations were almost at a deadlock on saturday morning. i played a certain role to convince those people who were having strong reservations, one first of all the procedural matters as well as some sensitive elements. i emphasize that we have come such a long way and did not have any time to lose. and if we had to put this to
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another negotiation process, then we would not be able to access this financial and technical support. this had immediate operational effect. starting on january of next year, providing financial support to the most vulnerable doubled in countries. -- developing countries. so i understand that there are some different assessments. we should build upon this climate accord at copenhagen's so that we will have -- we will be able to have legally binding treaties as soon as possible. >> a couple of critiques, if you do not mind. when german call this the worst
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deal in history. -- one chairman called this the worst deal in history. also people have raised issues about conflicts of interest that the chairman had. what can be done to make sure in all this greendale, they're not problems in terms of disclosure. >> many of the g-7's group leaders represented and that negotiations are very active. therefore when g-77 group leader spoke, i was not quite sure whether that truly represented the official -- in an official way, to represent g-77 group
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members. as you may have seen, there is a debate and there are many g-77 countries as well as countries from small islands in developing states, least developed states, vanguard countries, and they are expressing their support for this political accord. that is what i can tell you at this time. i cannot speak for the g-77 groups. >> they bring together allegations that there are business investments that been a bit in the deal. what do you make of that? >> things will shift with this
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political accord. their investment for a green economy and clean energy is will be much cheaper than it will be later. therefore as soon as the copenhagen accord is translated into a legally binding treaty, i am sure that the business community change their -- transition their business for a green economy. this is an encouraging sign. >> to get this agreement to a
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legally binding treaty, what is the most important factor? and what is the biggest difficulty to get an agreement of a legal finding treatment question -- a legally binding treaty? >> some of the key elements, what need to be done, and what needs to be in a legally binding treaty -- we want a global temperature rise below two degrees. there were some discussions of this by small island in developing countries. they want to hold it down much lower than two degrees. below 1.5 degrees. that has not been decided yet. we will have to wait until 2014,
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when ipcc's assessment report will be released. it will reduce our commitment to for this implementation course, including the temperature -- the global temperature rise and other issues. we need to have clear mitigation targets for the developed countries. and also for developing countries. voluntary mitigation action. the member states will have to submit their mitigation targets by january 31 of next year. these mitigation action reports will be annexed to this political accord.
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and then mitigation actions, the voluntary actions and the appropriate mitigation actions taken by some countries will be reviewed every two years. there has been a significant development and progress in terms of making the mitigation actions transparently, for immeasurable, reportable, and verifiable ways. this is significant progress. >> you said that you want to see a legally binding agreement in 2010. how optimistic are you that this is going to happen? and i wonder if you could elaborate a little bit on what you said about looking again at how the negotiations worked,
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because there was a lot of criticism that it was too unwieldy. how are you going to really get this to prevent something coming down to the wire -- to look at this again to prevent something coming down to the wire? >> i have already discussed with the president of mexico. i assured him that the negotiations were closely held, so we will have some successful meetings in mexico. and about the deadline, we will have to expedite. what i learned from this copenhagen process was that while we were able to see much heightened political will, and there was a common progress, a
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common will to act on this, but however the politicians were not yet united. the leaders were yen -- they were united in progress but they were not yet united in action. it will be important for the united nations, for me is the secretary general, to really help the political will to be translated into action. the negotiations were very tough, and many were entrenched in their old politics. that will be quite a big challenge for the united nations and for all the leaders altogether. but i appreciate that at this time to all the world leaders to
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have taken time, and patiently participated in all this negotiation, very tough negotiations. i would really hope an appeal to world leaders that while i know that not everybody is satisfied with these results, this was quite significant achievement which we were able to make in copenhagen. considering all the complexity and difficulties of this issue. it is not an easy task. everybody knew that it would not be an easy task. therefore we should be more proactive and more forthcoming,
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rather than critical. i would be very willing to discuss this issue with other world leaders and other opinion makers, and even civic and community leaders, how we can do better, how we can also change this negotiation process. there are some lessons which we have word, but all of these lessons will be helpful from today for a better result next year. thank you all very much. >> there will be a briefing right after this. >> tonight on "the communicators," the head of the motion and put -- the head of the motion picture association of america on reducing piracy.
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>> and now a senate hearing from july of this year on the children's -- the children's television act of 1990. witnesses include fcc chairman julius genachowski. this hearing lasted about one hour and 45 minutes. >> this hearing will come to order. we will have some of our members coming. we just impeached judge. [laughter] some will be emotionally upset and take time getting here. the ranking member, kay bailey hutchison, is not here today. if no one else comes, we will go right to you, mr. genachowski, and then we will see what happens from there. we have a lot of questions. you need to go after your first thing and we would love to have some of your folks that you're talking to come back again. and that we have another terrific panel behind that.
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my approach to this, frankly, is not to start out controversy away. i did that last year. i am so put off by the whole concept of promiscuity and lasciviousness and all of these things. it bothers a grandfather of five. i care about that. i found out that this is very much a first amendment committee, and so we have to work carefully, but i am determined that we will eventually get to this. now one atop basically about the committee, the commission, and we will talk about the committee another session. but be at ease. i am absolutely delighted to see. i explained it to people that just the fact that you had been appointed is a testament to the
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president and his interest in the best people -- like john aldrin, you know. he was ready to retire but he could not stay away from the opportunity to do it science and technology. so he areas. -- so here he is. television is a very powerful force in a child's life. children in america to pluck a watch between two and four hours of television today. i try not think about that in terms of my own home, where parents are both working and the stresses on them, and and whether to be sympathetic or not. you have to be but then you think of that technology of how you handle all of this. this is what i want to get into today. stunningly, by the time they reach first grade, and it has been a long time since i had
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been first grade but that is seven or eight years old? does that sound about right? six? that sounds better. [laughter] all right. that is more dramatic. they have spent what amounts to three school years in front of the television set by the time they are 6 years old. three school years. i have a hard time will be getting past that thought. let me be clear. when used for good, television programs can enlighten, entertain, and indeed teach. that can come from television itself. it can come from classic dvd is they go back and review history. there are so many ways that we can be fundamentally in lights and by what comes across our screen, which is now much more than just our screen. but when used for less noble
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purposes, it can expose children to in the sense, graphic, frightening scenes, which children and all people never really get over. i think this is have a coarsening effect on our children and a coarsening effect on our society. i regret that. i wish i could do something about that. maybe together we can. i think we have a right to be concerned. this is why 20 years ago, congress enacted the children's television act. 20 years ago was a long time. this lock reduce the commercialization of children's programming, which was great. more time on programming. it also created a market for more quality -- i hate the word but i will use it -- educational-informational programming for children. very important. these are the good things.
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these of the policies we still want to promote. these are the values that we hold dearly to date. this is what we look to in our children as we watch them grow up. they will be a new generation of leaders. we need to set values which matches what is required. but our media lansky -- landscape has changed so dramatically, just in the blink of an eye, it is a whole different world. so we have a challenge -- how we take these values and applied them to a very different media universe that we are faced with today, and particularly our children are faced with today, and that they are already a part of? a world where television sets are only a part of the media mix, a world where television screens are fused with a talent -- a computer screen, and people can you television programs over their mobile phones. it is hard for me to imagine but
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i know it is true. i see my son and his new wife beating the new york times on an iphone. -- reading the "new york times" on an icon on a sunday morning. i am suspicious of that. i want the paper in my hand because the iphone feels like it is leaving out context. the our two needs here. there is the need to provide good media content for children. secondly, there is a need to protect our children from harmful content. to provide and to protect, that is it. and we have got to do them both. this is why the committee would like to explore today how well the children television act has worked, in the judgment of our head of the fcc, and how we can
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be updated to reflect the new digital media requirements and what ever else may occur to you, sir. if we value what our children read, see, and here, we need to hold discussions like this. if we respect parents and their need for tools to help monitor their children's viewing, we need to hold discussions like this. and if we believe that there is some content that is simply not suitable for children, we need the hold hearings and discussions like this. finally, it will come to no surprise that i continue to have great concerns about violence, or which you do have some say. and decency, over which you have no say. i continue to believe that programming with gratuitous sex and excessive violence arms our children, and in a broader sense, the means our culture, not only to us but to the rest of the world. and the rest of the world part
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is becoming larger and larger. but this is not the central focus, have been given this long speech, of today's speech. so let us identify how we can work together to improve programming for our children in a general way. so i thank you, julius, for being here. i thank the panel that will fall you who are all experts, one of them has a west virginia background none that i know have a arkansas background. but we have to do the best buy our young viewers. i now call upon mark prior, i -- our consumer girl. she does all the good things in our committee. >> thank you for our interest in this. you've always been a tireless advocate of protecting our
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children. not just on television but in other media. your leader in this nationally and we appreciate that very much. chairman jankowski, is great to have you here. -- genachowski, it is great to have you here. it's good to have a new approach and a new atmosphere to the sec. i look for to hearing your statement and asking you questions. >> the floor, sir, is yours. >> thank you, chairman rockefeller, senator pryor, thank you for inviting me here today to discuss the children act of 1990 and its new role in the media age. i applaud chairman rockefeller in the committee for commencing this timely and important inquiry. your commitment to cheer the -- children known to provisions as the e-rate and other initiatives
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is well-known. the public appreciates it. senator pryor, your commitment to this issue, including the child's safe doing act is well known and appreciated. i want to thank you for your recent contribution of your staff member to my staff, an important step in revitalizing the fcc. the historic role this committee -- that it is played with respect to children and tv, with contributions from so many of its members, is an important legacy to build upon for the future. the children's television act is landmark legislation, to serve the dual purpose of promoting educational and informational programming for children and placing limits on commercial advertising to which children are exposed. three points stand out as i see it. children remain our most precious national resource. it is as essential as effort to
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ensure that that they are educated, healthy, and prepared for the 21st century. and that they're protected from commercial exploitation. second, television continues to have a powerful effect on our children, and broadcast television remains a unique medium, the exclusive source of media relied upon for many households today. the commission's responsibility to enforce the children's television act remains vital. senator rockefeller, as you have said, much has changed since the act was enacted in 1990. for instance, broadcasting has gone digital, offering new opportunities and new challenges. multichannel video programming has jumped dramatically since 1990, significantly expanding choices for viewers who can afford to pay for them.
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video games have been a prevalent entertainment choice and reality for millions of kids. we have data and fax around the office, but these trends are well well-known. the bottom line is that 20 years ago, parents worried about water to television sets in the house. today parents worry not only about tv, but about the computer in the kitchen, the gaming console in the basement, and the mobile phones in their kids pockets. no wonder parents increasingly find themselves playing the digital media equivalent of the zone defense, all across this expanding playing field, facing an array of new challenges not contemplated 20 years ago. several of these issues and all in an sec examination initiated by senator pryor which is due at the end of august. that process and the 1 lots to date together reflect the
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appropriate and widespread interest in the consequences for children and families of the new digital media landscape. as congress and the commission review this changing landscape, there are a number of issues to explore free these include the quantity and quality of educational programming currently available, the ability of parents to find educational programming, the capability of new digital technologies to better inform parental choices, the current state of advertising on children programming as well as other programming that has children in the audience, and the assessment of the new concerns and opportunities presented by the changing digital media world. exploring these and other issues, i believe that certain goals and values endure. the importance of education -- it is important that our children have all the tools that they need for our democracy the importance of protecting children -- video content for our nation's kids should not
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treat them as little consumers. guarding against inappropriate marketing to children is as vital today in the digital era as it was 20 years ago when congress limited commercial advertising to kids in the children's television ad. the importance of empowering parents -- parents had had the full range of information and tools in exercising their essential responsibility. and the importance of recognizing the importance, buried, and important roles of the government, parents, and in the private sector and this effort that both have vital roles to play in helping parents and protecting the health and well-being of children, while honoring and abiding by the first amendment. i am hopeful that the evolving media landscape will produce new business models to help produce more children -- more programming for children and enable parents to pick and choose. i hope that they will apply their creative talents to meeting their obligations to the american public.
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studies show that television like sesame street and others can be a force for good, and the positive public image as an educational messages can affect behavior in healthy and productive ways. we know that public service announcements have had real benefits, with reductions in teen pregnancy and drug use by children. this is a time for all providers of digital content to from -- to ask themselves, are reacting responsibility -- are we acting responsibly? given the importance of the goals, and the significant changes in the market and technology, i believe that the fcc should and will conduct an -- conduct an inquiry in the best way that we can help empower parents in the digital age. i've directed the fcc staff to begin the process and i will work with my colleagues to launch it, to refresh the agency's record and gathered the necessary faxed to promote the critical goals that animates the
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children's television act. the inquiry will affect both new concerns and new opportunities presented by the changing digital media world. it will be research for congress as it examines these issues. i also intend to the agency to take concrete action where appropriate. one such area and false advertising and digital television. five years ago the commission reached a tentative conclusion that at set up for rectal option it should prevent interactivity that could connect kids to commercial material. i believe that the versatility of digital television diversified new economic opportunities for broadcasters, a critical goal, but protecting kids from appropriate commercialization remains essential. the commission will study the record fully, but at this point i am inclined to agree that the agency should make its tentative
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conclusion final and say that direct demands to children are off limits without an option for parents. i believe the fcc itself can be part of the solution to the issues that we're discussing today. i've directed the fcc staff to revamp as soon as possible but children's television program portion of fcc.gov. there is information there, although sometimes the presented and the most helpful way to parents and others interested in finding educational programming. that kind of information and other relevant information should be easier to find an easier to use. my goal is for the fcc to have a model government website for parents and children. i commend the chairman for convict -- commencing this crucial examination of children in them did -- digital media age and alan ford answering your
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questions. >> what would you feel about a little red button on the television monitor which a child could push or a child's parent could push, just a little button sitting right up there, bright red, and you push its and you find out how what is to follow is rated in terms of family values and things of this sort? was it that few charitable trust that came out and said that 16% of people know how to work all the stuff? i hate to embarrass them, but there are a couple of ladies and gentleman sitting behind me who cannot work that themselves.
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easy ways to empower people to make decisions about what they are about to see coming easy ways for children -- how do you make children, if they see it is now rated very well -- it is not rated very well, and that will entice them. i cannot answer that, but i am looking for a way to solve our problems and a friendly way which works. enough of that. children's tv act is tw a decades old -- is two decades old. technology has changed. the cable channels -- everything has gone on to the broadcast world is because that is where we were back then. that was programming over the internet. there's the fusion of the television screens and the computer screens. the mobile phones, which we talked about.
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the bulk of the televisions children at only applies to broadcast. it is a function of 20 years ago. while the advertising restrictions apply to children's programming on both broadcast and cable, the three-hour rule is only for broadcasting. the law has a fairly narrow and its co -- is fairly narrow in its code. the question -- does this limitation make sense today? should we only be concerned about children's interaction with media when it occurs over the airwaves? or do all of these other new forms of media and programming, does that also merit are concerned if there is a way of making that happen? and final question -- what you believe the fcc or congress should do to update the
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children's television act so that the law better reflects the digital media world our children -- our kids know today? >> center -- senator, we have two sets of parents and the country. we have parents who receive broadcasting and cable, and paris to receive broadcast on it. that is still the prime form of distribution and millions of homes, roughly 15 million homes. for that reason, making sure that broadcast television continues to provide quality educational programming for children is important. with respect to cable, paris to receive those kinds of programming in their home are most interested in making sure that all across the array of channels that are coming into the home, they have choices. and there is some quality programming on cable. i suspect a big part of the frustration that parents have
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with respect to cable is the first issue you mentioned, how do we find it? what tools do we have to identify quality programming for our kids, depending on their age, their level of interest, and how we exercise the control that we want to exercise, if there are certain things that come and that we do not want our kids to see? to your early. , i am optimistic on the power of technology it is unleashed in this area to empower us. i think we should think big and we should expect things from the entreprenuers in the media industry. if a parent has a 6-year-old who is doing great on math but has a vocabulary challenges, then a parent can say easily, where can i find programming that is high
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quality and that will help with vocabulary, or help with history or math? it should be easy to find. >> which has to do with the web site. >> it may also have to do with the forms of distribution that are coming in to the living room. the fact that broadcasters now digital is a significant fact. it should over time allowed for more empowerment, more choices for the television in the living room than there used to be. one of the reasons i like to see the fcc to an inquiry in this area is to ask exactly these questions. what is the state of the marketplace now? the sec could use much better data on what is actually going on. and second, what are the tools available now -- some of this we will be addressing in the report that the senate has report -- has requested, but i will be a
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status report at the beginning of this inquiry -- what a waste to help parents make choices of the sort that you identified? >> i think we should maintain -- says there are only three of us here -- talking. which is sort of be loose in our restrictions. i crashed the five-minute rule in my opening statement. i am dissatisfied with myself on both accounts. i present you know senator mark prior. >> thank you, mr. chairman. hopefully some good will come of that act. i encourage you to think about what chairman rockefeller said a few minutes ago about a button on the television set or the remote control for both, -- or both, because i think it is an interesting concept that you
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could almost get a status report of what you are watching and hit the button and there would come up the ratings and how it is rated. that would be a useful tool for parents. it would also bring awareness to anybody paying attention that the television said does have the b disk shipped -- the television set does have the v- chip in it, and the vast majority don't know about the settings are they don't take the time to set it up. -- or they do not take the time to set up. i think you should consider that as an option. there may be some good technology out there that may make a big difference. another concern i have, and this is just the changing nature of technology, is the fact that our
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children now have access to video streaming, over the air broadcasting, all kinds of media, internet -- through their cellphones and mobile devices. to me, this just mushrooms the challenges that we have. because now, even if we are parents to try to pay attention and set up our cable or satellite box, or we try to do the v-chip on our television, it far child gets a telephone that has the capability, all the sudden the entire internet can be open to them. does the sec have any plans to look at that and try to -- does the fcc have any plans to look at that and try to work on that from the parent's perspective as well? >> in response to the house a feeling that, we will catalog
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the tools available and identified what is available to parents now. i think that is part of the companion inquiry that i envisioned. we should ask all of these questions about this changed landscape. i could not agree with you more. when i grew up, there were a handful of broadcast television signals and the home. my parents had a hard job for many reasons, but this part, they knew when i was watching tv and when i was not. it was relatively easy to have rules. now the landscape is different and you have to think about the mobile phone 31 our kids to be on computers, have access to information, and more more schools require kids to be on computers to do their homework. it opens this does to education that we have not seen before. -- it opens vistas to education
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that we have not seen before. but what they're doing their homework, how are they not accessing information that can be there? it needs to give parents confidence and tools to exercise the responsibility is it that they want. i think every parent wants more and better quality programming across all medium. no parent wants their kids exploited, and they want simple, easy to use tools that can help them exercise their choices. they prefer to do it themselves and not have the government do it for them. one of the things that we can do is take a hard look at what we can do to prompt innovation that i think parents want. what is the reason why there are more and better filtering tools on the internet to then there is with respect to television? let's ask that question and
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understand why that is and understand whether there are things that can be done to increase the level of innovation on all distribution platforms. >> while i have a minute, let me ask -- as i understand it, in 2007 the sec began an inquiry about -- in response to whether educational and informational programming actually had any significant educational value. and you may not know, because you are new there, but do you know the status of that and when the fcc will complete this review? apparently one member released a study that highlights this fact. a lot of programming that may be called educational and informational, has no educational value. >> it is a concern that i have heard and that i share. i do not have a timetable on when the commission will address it.
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it is in everyone's interest for xdbroadcasters to have toxd comy with the at to understand what the rules are so that there are no surprises. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. and carrying on with that distinguished chairman of they consumer subcommittee, who does incredible work around here. my work -- my wife works for the washington public television station. you get the whole routine of children's programming. one of the things, as i watched my grandchildren, last several weeks have been a real education for me. i watch what they watch, and boy, are they all over the place pretty all this one is four, and the sec did all this
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is 1.5, and they have mastered all of them. it is amazing. -- and the second one is 1.5, and they have mastered all of them. it is amazing. you that mr. rogers when he was around, and sesame street is around, and you've got all these things which have worked traditionally. they're considered safe and confidence-building, and that by the little copies and products. i have absolutely no idea if any generations into the small type media convergences, and whether the standard of 20 years ago about what children should see and can hear and watch and learn
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from and get excited by, whether it still works. but going after market prior mark -- mark pryor's question. >> i grew up with sesame street and zoom and other programs that i thought were great a time. a generation before had seen those programs, an oscar and elmo jumping around, they would understand it. every generation of kids finds different forms of information programming compelling. i think we will be able to address these questions with respect to children television workshop and sesame street's 2.0. i don't know what kind of quality of educational programming will attract viewers. i do believe that there are creative talents can continue to
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develop high-quality educational programming that meets the evolving tastes and interests of children in a way that is consistent with the standards that do not change, quality, education, giving parents something to choose for their kids that they actually like. i do not think that if we think of this says medicine that our children have to take -- the kids will not watch it and we will have programming on television that is like a tree falling in the forest. but i think we have been the creative talents that we can create talents and choice, we can make progress. let me add one thing to that. i think we have creative talent. and i think we have the mental part of parents. i am hopeful that technology can now bridge that so that our
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creative talent can supply the demand for parents in a way that i hope the digital world is supported by strong business models. i look forward to hearing mr. alan on this topic. >> the fcc -- this whole question about stimulating the production of children programming for our young as -- i just have to say that it is a profoundly important question to me. i translated into where our nation is headed. and if we do this right, we can make an enormous difference. if we do it wrong, we would get into all kinds of violence -- which is easy to attribute to tv. maybe you cannot. or movies, or whatever. but it is enormously important. it is enormously important in what it does to the american
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image overseas. they see things they cannot believe, and our kids are taking them for granted and letting it roll off their back or letting it sink and in important -- an unfortunate way. the broadcasters were required to do the three-hour rule. those three hours had to be dedicated to programming which was really good for children. it was designed for children. it was not meant to deviate from their air edition. erudi -- from erudition. t think we should require more? -- do you think we should require more? and says the rule was adopted, the fcc has done, quite frankly, very little to enforce
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it. and it has very low interest in it. what can the fcc to better to monitor the quality of programs that are aired to comply with this three-hour rule? if you can figure out where the three-hours are? that is my problem. he used to be the kids did their program -- did their homework at 7:00, and now it is my impression that kids start doing the homework it 10:00. they are watching all of the parental stuff, which is not subject to any of this. ponder upon that, will you? >> i would be happy to. let me start with your last point, which is, there have to be things that the fcc can do to get the public easy to use access to the information the
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sec has. an important part of the thinking behind the chill of -- the children's television act in its original limitations was the public check on what broadcasters would be doing. there are rolls around identifying programming on tv as educational-information, and those roles made sense for the technologies as they existed when the rules were implemented. we are now in an internet world where this information should be very easily a sensible to parents. as i mentioned in my opening remarks, i directed the media bureau of the fcc to revamp a portion of the sec web site to be easily a sizable to parents. -- the fcc web site to be easily accessible to parents. if it leads in -- it needs a pair test and is not getting one them.
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-- a fair test and if is not getting one now. i could next up for the agency to take -- a good step for the agency to take -- i think that we can seek areas of concern and also some good news. there is programming available on cable that was not available 20 years ago when the act was passed. that is good news. that program is not available to americans who do not have cable. i have questions about how easy it is for parents to find but the quality programming on cable and also the ei programming that is on broadcast. i suspect our inquiry will reflect on the quality issue that you raise, the parental tools issue that you raise, and the enforcement issue that you raised.
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>> can i make one more comment? just to emphasize my feeling about the importance of all this, i hardly go back to west virginia that i do not have a roundtable with parents, school teachers, psychiatrists, psychologists, principles, guidance counselors -- who are scared, horrified, helpless in many respects, who feel alienated from the process, who have absolutely no idea what the fcc does -- because i could talk about a web site, and you can talk about a web site -- what did they know about a web site unless they have heard about it? they do not know what to do and they desperately want to do well by their children and they feel that they cannot. i am not asking for response. i am simply saying how important
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i think this is. mark pryor. no, it isn't. [inaudible] >> i think we're ready to move on. >> you cannot wear him out. i guarantee it. i want to ask you another question. >> i thank you and commend the committee for launching this inquiry. it is an important topic in america's parents are grateful that you're doing this. >> ok. i think that means he has to go. well, bless you and to again. we're so lucky to have you, i cannot tell you. >> thank you, sir. >> ok, where is my witness list? [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009]
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>> welcome. are you all good friends on speaking terms in that kind of thing? we have a nation to save and a young generation to say, and an older generation to save.
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let me introduce the panel. it is mr. gary knell, president and ceo of sesame workshop. one lincoln plaza, which i take it to mean lincoln center. right across the street. dr. sandra calvert, and this is where my west virginia pride starts. >> absolutely. >> it is a hokey thing to do but i cannot help it. you are considered an absolute master of the subject. and i mean it. the children's digital media center, your kid georgetown, and there are other titles. we're going to wait to hear from you are and i am thrilled that you're here. mr. john lawson, the executive director of the eye on media networks. welcome to virginia. ms. cyma zarghami, the president of nickelodeon, which my
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grandchildren watch a great deal. and the mtv and family group from new york, mr. james dyer, is that right? >> yes. >> i am terrified of names like that. the ceo of common sense media. sounds like a dangerous group. [laughter] from center cisco, california. >> i actually came from lake tahoe, my family vacation. it is very important to be here. >> do we have a chocolate chip cookies? we're joined by the good senator from alaska. you've got here too late to make your statement. don't you think? just barely missed it. he is absolutely terrific. he is 47 years old.
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first term, walks in here, does not use a note, everything occurs appear, he seems to know everything. and he is part of the new eagerness of this committee, which i want to make very clear to you. we are now eager committee. we have hired investigators, like henry waxman has. we look into dark corners. we want to know who is doing what. we love beating up on the insurance industry and we're very good at it. and we do not want have to do that on television. mr. gary now, can we start with you? -- mr. gary knell, can we start with you? .
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>> when sesame street was created 40 years ago, it was about trying to harness the power of the educational role of the media. with the act focused on was limiting the negative impacts of our children paused help that the media sometimes walks into. since 20 years ago, as you pointed out earlier, the entire idea of the act promoting better
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media on a broadcast station or limiting commercial -- the meeting commercials was very well-intended. but in a 2010 context, it is almost irrelevant today as we look at a world where you're down children -- with your grandchildren will not know a world before videogames or cell phones. everything is changed. but the needs are the same. the needs are about education for our children. we have 30% of our children in this country dropping out of high school. we know by the fourth grade that if they are not readers at inappropriate grade level, the chances of them dropping out of high school are great. today, which did not have as big as need for preschool programming. there's a lot of educational
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programming. there were two shows in 1980, today there are 47. that critical age group of six to 11 when children go from learning to read to learning -- to reading to learn. we will take a look at how we can incentivize creationaing content. we know this media can teach and make a difference. we are pleased that the new broadband act that you helped enact earlier this year is important. it is critical as we go to the next decade as we see a merger between formal learning and digital learning into our classrooms and informal learning at home. these will be merged as
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technologies get more sophisticated. on the public health issues, there are huge public health issues. i want to just point to one. i chaired a task force for a senator and the former fcc chief about food marketing for kids. we made a lot of kids -- we made a lot of progress but there were holes that were not filled. there is still confusion in the marketplace about uniform nutrition standards so that parents understand and broadcasters understand and food companies understand about what is a healthy food and what is not healthy. these are things that our government needs to focus on and clarify. at the same time, media companies who play such a huge gatekeeper role, whether they admit that or not, there are still in many ways the channel between a child and content. how can they step up to
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understand their powerful role and make a difference in children's lives as we face this great academic -- great epidemic about childhood obesity? there is a very important role that the media needs to play. the importance of education continues in 2010 just as it did back in 1969 with sesame street and in 1990 with the children's television act. the ability to promote media as a solution as opposed to part of the problem are the two things i would like the committee to focus on as you home in on taking a new look at children's television. thank you. >> thank you. that is well said. dr. sandra calvert, director of the children's digital media center at georgetown university. >> good afternoon chairman rockefeller and members of the
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senate committee on commerce, science, and transportation. i'm a professor of psychology at georgetown university, the director of the children's digital media center and a native of west virginia. 21st century work instils our knowledge and the facility with digital technology. my own work is say professor and that of my colleagues includes an examination of how we can disseminate the power of 21st century digital media to enlightened and educate children as well as prepare them for the future. the children televisions and act as an important vehicle for accomplishing this goal. from cradle to development, their lives are embedded with digital media. in the first six years, children spend an average produce children spend an average of two hours in front of the screen. the amount of media time jumps from 6.5 hours today -- per day.
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television is still the dominant medium of choice, new work interactive media are rapidly making inroads into a child's daily experience. congress recognized the potential of media for children development when they passed the act in 1990 which required broadcasters to provide educational and informational television programming for trout users as well as -- for child users. since the passage of the television act, commercial broadcasters have had to provide no more than a mere three hours of educational television content per week. even so, a 2008 content analysis reported by children now reported that children's educational programs or educationally insufficient.
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with the implementation of this, the time to reconsider the requirements of the children's television act is now. we have many children who are struggling for failing in school. our children standard test scores on mathematics, science, and reading letters a truck behind international peers. the state of appears -- the state of affair is appalling. digital television allows broadcasters to transmit high- definition images, and provide antler services such as interactive options. some stations are taking advantage of the new digital media by creating web site content that supplements the educational messages they transmit via television
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programming. and these new were interfaces' allow children to create, to interact directly with educational materials and to extend learning to a different platform that allows them to control what they are learning at a rate that fits their current skill level. the commercial broadcasters have been far less likely to take advantage of this powerful option. at this point, it is time for the commercial broadcasters to return something in kind to the american public for the use of our band with. therefore, i recommend that congress in conjunction with the federal communications commission considers the following steps -- require commercial broadcasters to expand their educational and informational program offerings on their airwaves and on web sites. expand the number of players who are part the educational and informational mixed. those that create interactive
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media should be high on this list. allocate funds for a public and private partnership to serve as a think-tank for creating and testing the efficacy of the media, particularly interactive media. the children's television act was passed almost 20 years ago as a way to use our media in a constructive way for our children to develop. the promise of congress at that time was of just that, a promise. the dream can become a reality in the early part of the 21st century. german rockefeller and committee members, thank you for your time. -- chairman rockefeller and committee members, thank you for your time. i like your idea very much. >> john lawson, executive vice
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president of ion media networks from arlington, virginia. >> thank you. thank you for having me here to discuss broadcaster's continuing dedication to children television and the ground breaking efforts made by ion media and this area. i am the executive vice president of time media networks which is the nation's largest broadcast television group. i testified today in my role as a member of a nab board of directors of the national association of broadcasters and more importantly, as a parent. i have twin sons that are here today. >> right over there? >> yes, sir.
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>> they are great looking kids. i have been wondering. i want them to stand up. >> they take after their mother. [applause] >> you are right about that. thank you, boys. >> i hope that statement added credibility to the rest of my statement. >> we live in virginia but we have a home in west virginia that we love. [laughter] >> this is not a conspiracy. i am locationally neutral. >> to make certain, and local television stations across the country to share congress' goal of educational programming. it is not lost on anyone that children are a precious resource and we must provide them with the tools to allow them to succeed.
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to this point, local broadcasters remain the foundation in communities across the country as the leading source of news, said the information, culture, entertainment, and sports. after 20 years after enactment, broadcasters continue to provide diverse and quality brogue -- programming. thanks to the efforts of the leadership of this committee, broadcasters have successfully transitioned to all digital broadcasting. on june 12, america became the first large country in the world to complete the transition to dtv. millions of households across the country are enjoying better picture and sound and better programming. we hear streams that include a
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full time kids show -- children's channel. we also broadcast on life, a channel dedicated to the act of living. broadcasters are also preparing to deploy it mobile dtv that would allow anybody with a cell phone or laptop to receive free television wherever they go. i am very proud that i can demonstrate for you and the committee mobile digital television. this is our service displayed through and over the error signal coming from our local station on an lg cell phone that is equipped to receive mobile television. we will be displaying these and others in the house next week. this is dtv, sir. >> i am impressed. i would like to be able to see it. [applause] >> i would be glad to bring it
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to you at your convenience. we are excited by dtv and the new services that it brings. since the debut in 2007, we remain the only 24-7 children's television service, the only one tester did nationally, free, and over the air. this groundbreaking, bilingual destination for children offers programs in literacy, of values, and healthy life styles and celebrates the unlimited possibilities of a child's imagination. moreover, we recently adopted a set of nutritional guidelines for acceptable foods that can be advertised on the air. it has been called the gold standard in the efforts to combat child of obesity and we commend senator brown back for work in this area.
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we're dedicated to the wellness of america's kids. at this time, we hope this committee will examine and support ways to encourage distribution for broadcasters like ion who are attempting to provide media alternatives to children and families. as recognized in today's hearing, parents have abundant choices for broadcasting for programming specifically designed to meet needs. children access media after a number of devices and services between several different venues. we must make special mention of the efforts of our non- commercial education stations which have enriched the lives of american children for years. as we sit here today, broadcasters are looking at the next 20 years of children's
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television. first and foremost, we remain committed to providing quality children education and informational programming. at the same time, we must remain vigilant against content that is unsuitable for children. in this regard, we must utilize the most effective tool of all, parental control. we agree on the importance of continued innovation. in conclusion, broadcaster look forward to working with this committee as we reexamine the children's television act. broadcasters aren't limited to three hours per week. -- are limited to three hours per week. the work every day to serve their local communities. thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today. i look forward to answering any questions you may have. >> thank you. this is some and barzani, president of -- cyma zarghami,
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president of nickelodeon. >> thank you. i am president of nickelodeon and i will be buying a house in western junior shortly. [applause] -- a house in west virginia shortly. i have been working at nickelodeon for 24 years. when i first came, cable television was relatively new. i was at nickelodeon when the children's television act was written in the media landscape was a very different place then. children basically watched television on saturday mornings or weekdays in syndication. the latchkey kid phenomenon had just begun. channels like the cartoon network did not exist. 99% of nickelodeon's content
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came from canada and "my three sons" was the top-rated program. today, i have three sons. nickelodeon is 30 years old. it produces close to 100% of its own content and we have been the no. 1 rated cable channel for 15 years. it has been an opportunity to serve kids that has kept me this long. it was created lit -- originally to serve older kids who were watching adults- targeted television. we knew it was tough to be difficult and an adult world. it still is. we rode in a promises to our audience that made our core brand attributes and that is as true today as when we first read them. we put kids first, respect them, or inclusive, and listen to them. we have killed and thousands of studies to better understand their lives and i believe that has been a key to our success. nickelodeon has always followed the guidelines set forward by
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the children's television act and we believe the commercial audience. we cannot feel there is any need for additional regulation. the audience of art network ranges from preschoolers to families. we serve them on television, on- line, and in other areas. our programming day is carefully constructed to serve the audience that is prevalent and that. mornings are for preschools, afternoons are for bigger kids, evenings are for families. we always try to tell authentic stores that make children feel good about themselves. they see children that look like themselves, dealing with issues that they deal with. for families, we added one hour of prime-time programming started at 8:00 with "malcolm in the middle." we have seen the we increase on
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shows like "home improvement" and we could not be more pleased that families are gathering to watch our shows. we have been making gold standard preschool program for 15 years with shows like "blues clues" and dora the explorer. we expanded our preschool channel noggin to 24 hours. you should note that each show costs approximately 650,000 per episode to produce. we would separate the important moments of their lives with them -- we would celebrate the import moments of their lives with them. nickelodeon news has been on our
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channel for 17 years and has helped explain major news event that impact kids and a kid- appropriate way. since 1988, we have let children have their own vote for president. it is one of our favorite campaigns. that happens usually before the presidential elections. the kids just about always predict the winner. our social initiatives have helped inform and activateñr kis about everything from how they can improve their neighborhoods, the environment and their own personal health and wellness. every year, which let a day to go off the air and offline to remind kids to go outside and be active and play. thanks to our affiliate partners, we have followed our audience as they have moved to new platforms. this generation of kids seamlessly navigate between television, on-line and mobile. they can watch the shows on
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television, on the internet, or a digital video recorder. çthese new platforms are growig in numbers as they serve the needs for the consumer and families, in particular. we have a multiple of 62 -- said the toll on all of our website -- we have a multiple of safety tools on all of our web sites. i have that hundreds of business executives like many here today who are devoted to doing right by this audience. after 30 years, when it nickelodeon have a generation of young parents who know us when we -- when they were kids and know what to expect when they allow children to access our content. we have earned their trust and look for to continuing to learn -- continuing to learn it for years to come. thank you. >> thank you.
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dr. james steyer, ceo of the common sense media, from san francisco. you came all this way breaking into your vacation. we think. we think it is worth it. >> i think it is worth it, too. thank you for having us here today. i am also a consulting professor at stanford university. i am sure that i have had students from each of your states in my class is in the last year alone. i'm also a father of four children. i would like to summarize what some of my colleagues said. i want to go back to something the said at the end of your remarks. to us, this is a transformational moment in the history of media. this really is where our nation
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is headed. that is correct. we need to take a look at this issue in that light, not just in the content -- in the context of where it was but where it is headed. media and all of his various platforms that exists today and will exist over the next 20 years is central to our domestic and international security. you cannot look at the issues we're looking at without a basic framework. we would like to suggest one for you today that could inform this committee's leadership. this is a new era. that is critically important. i want to great that framework. -- create that from work. educate, and power, and protect. whether it is what applications
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might 5-year-old can download or what the latest show on i on tv -- on ion television. i think this committee has the opportunity to lead this nation into the 21st century on these issues. when we talk about education, there are two issues. there needs to be far more quality educational content on all platforms. the content is there but it must be distributed across all of the platforms. the second part of education is educating children and their parents and teachers of that digital literacy and citizenship. that is what the essence of this is about at the end of the day. we live in a digital media world. if our kids are not digitally illiterate, they will not compete, they will not grow up in the right way, and we need to
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educate teachers, as well. that has to be a part of our mission. we also talked in the discussion about what we mean by digital media. empowerment is very critical. that is the red button. we are closer to that red button then you may realize. we rate everything. we are in the middle of discussing whether we should read all the applications on iphones. the technology exists. leadership from this committee and the fcc in in power in parents across the country -- fcc in empowering parents is critical. the technology and information
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exists. leadership from this committee and the fcc will do a ton in that regard. it is out there and it is to be used. that little red button can be made available to every family in this country soon. the third element of this framework is to protect. you mentioned that. i agree that is critical. the protection element comes from people like nickelodeon and also from the committee and the fcc. i very much believe we can frame protective efforts by this committee and government to balance first amendment freedoms with the best interests of our children and families. whether it is violence or inappropriate sexual messages during baseball games i am trying to watch with my kids, there are a lot of images in our
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content. kids are consuming this. that protected landscape can be created and overseen by this committee and be consistent with first amendment principles that i teach every year to my students at stanford. at the end of the day, this is that very special moment. this committee has the opportunity to work with people on both sides of the aisle. it is a truly bipartisan concern. this is truly an issue that republicans and democrats can come together on to forge a new consensus to change our kids' futures. i would be viewed by saying you cannot take a more important topic. it is so important that i was willing to give up my vacation. i would urge you to think big, speak dramatically, make major investments, and all of our kids will benefit from what you do.
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thank you. >> thank you. when i started this, i said i was so fed up with the fcc that i wanted to remake the whole thing. i do not think we have to do that because we have superb commissioners. it is so incredibly important. it used to be that children reacted to us. now we have to be reactive to them. if we are not, this is a serious part. children look at things, television sets or hand-held sets, they are looking at things that influenced them deeply which flows into them in ways that we cannot understand. i started out with a round television screen with you could not see anything. it is a lot different now. there is a big effect on them.
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it does determine the direction o$ the world. w3>> if i may, one thing i would urgeym this committee to think about is that children are not just consumers of media. they are also creators of media. that is what much of the content that we deal with on a daily basis is, is children being creators. they have to understand the basic rules of the road. privacy, identity, and other things that go hand in hand with the ability of being a crater which is what children are with these the platforms. that should be part of this committee's leadership, as well. your brain chawed -- your grandchild will be creating media sooner than you think. they need to be educated. >> thank you. a will start the questioning with mark begich. >> thank you. i am nervous about the questions
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i have to ask. thank you for doing this. thank you for being here. i am a parent of 87-year-old. -- of 87 year-old. -- of a 7-year-old. i have not seen a movie in several years. it was mentioned by a couple of you, the 6-11 age group. this is a gap. i did not know what the statistics are. my son likes watching george lopez. i try to extract him from it. çwe are very aggressive about
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that. how do we get, without mandatory requirements in regards to ensuring there is good content formy 6-11 year olds? that is a huge gap. w3you talkedçó about preschool h 24 hours, except my son will not watch that. he is not interested. he jumps to the pre-teen stuff. at the end, if there is a boy or girl kiss, he change the channel. everything else, he likes to watch. that to me is a challenge. >> thank you for pointing that out. our kids are digital learners. they're walking into school at
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age five or six, able to use media better than some of their teachers. çi was interviewed by reporters yesterday who told me that her 2-year-old was downloading iphone applications for her phone. >> my son is using quick books. he likes checks and invoices. we are a small business family. that is intriguing to him. >> we should focus on key factor of parents. one way to go about this is the pipeline of schools. we have been talking to the department of education and the chairman is an advocate of trying to merge these digital learners and schools, figuring out a way in which we can create content that will bridge from school to the home. we are seeing homework being given out and you are connecting
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the child to that. think how much more powerful it is when you have harry truman's speech about the atomic bomb and that high school classroom rather than reading it in a textbook. we can do that for six to nine year-old. we need to make media as a partner in this. the fact is there is not a lot of advertising money that is available for this age group. even though there is great work at nickelodeon in trying to address that group, along with some offer collings -- colleagues, we have not really seen an abundance of programming that is not more tipping toward the entertainment side. you go from preschool education to all entertainment, all the time. we have to figure out how we can have the best of hollywood and
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the best of silicon valley to focus on this need to create programming that is going to move the needle on the educational side. let us focus on those kids. >> cyma zarghami, four children that are not preschool, the morning is important. it is important for also that age group. could you address and then i call it the working family and single parents which highlighted,xd that 3:00 to 7:00 period when a caregiver maybe there. my mother-in-law tells us she is strict, but i know that based on his comments, what he is watching.
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>> nickelodeon, and the very early days, did a lot of research with children to find out what it was that they were çinterested in getting from television. we are primarily in and a tenant brand for kids. we feel very strongly that we want to do right by them, as well. mentioned how it is difficult for a kid to be in an adult world, we want to know how to navigate through the world at school. they're going to school to get their academic education but what they do not necessarily have is this tool that they need to navigate social skills. çnickelodeoni] early on asked t kids want. theyç said just becausexd someg
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okis good for2í you to is not n it tastes good. like a green vegetables. we said to them that we will tell stories that are relevant and help them navigate bullies at school, making new friends, dealing with tough issues with siblings, dealing with(p@rents with a positive conclusion so that eds kids watched kids on nickelodeon that look like them or have the same issues that they have, they can take that all and and navigate the world their living in in a more confident way. we believe and i think everybody would agree, this is important, particularly for that age group in the >> thank you. >> thank you.
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we are not following the rule book. >> senator klobuchar, you will be next. >> i am grateful for your hospitality. thank you. let me ask professor calvert, in your testimony, you mentioned the possible creation of a public-private center for children's programming. it would serve as a think-tank for helping creating and distributing new types of children pro -- children's programming. could you tell us more about that? >> my thinking on this is many times, you do not have all of the key people at the same table. if you were to really be able to get the people who create media, along with the people who study media, the policymakers,
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the advocates for children's media, if you can get them around the same table and finance them in a way where we could begin to have creative ideas, we could advance the educational arena. i would also point to ei programming that does include social content. by law, that is how it was originally defined. i think all these people and amex could create a partnership that looks to the best interest -- all these people could create a partnership that looks the best interests of children. there is not a good funding mechanism to do that. sometimes private industry does that and they move on. i think by working together, we could begin to create a better quality media environment for
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children. i am especially interested in seeing some of the more attractive options -- more interactive options. >> we limit the amount of advertising but we do not regulate the content. çis it time to revisit this suggest? childhood obesity, and other issues? what do you think? i]>> r4can tell you that our channel, we have a 24/7 free broadcast station for children. çwe have voluntarily adopted te strongest in debt -- strongest nutritional guidelines in the industry. we think there is a market for programming for children that parents can feel safe with their
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children doing it. in this case, i commend the work of gary and others in the leadership of others in this area. we have heard that message and we have adopted these guidelines. i would also fall on senator begich's question, the station is defined to -- is created to fill that gap. we understand there is a marketplace failure. we are trying is a private sector to fill that niche with it is available 24/7. >> i would also point out that you can look at the united kingdom who has faced this issue to their regulatory framework. they addressed the same thing. you have the bbc which is a non- commercial service that has
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multiple sources of funding. in the commercial sector, they put forth a set of nutritional guidelines for food marketingç, which is not because of obesity but is a contributing factor, about limiting the exposure of are less healthy for them. they came up with a set of uniform nutritional standards. at last i checked, they have a vibrant program and there are several kids who are engaged in children's television every day. >> in your answer to this, work in the contents and the content of the movies with the film's with embedded advertisements. >> thank you. i agree. i think we can go a lot further.
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i would tell you that you are on solid first and mammograms if you crafted carefully. i would suggest that there is a lot that you could do and that we could do in this country. uniform nutritional standards. the chairman said in his opening statement the making permanent the ban on interactive programs, that is a no-brainer. i hope the fcc does that in the coming months. september looking at the advertisements that the air during sporting events which are extremely offensive to me when i have to explain some of them to my 5 year old. there is industry leadership
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that has been slow to materialize. there needs to be leverage from this committee and elsewhere. i think there are ways where weakened value -- balance the best interests of children with advertising and the need to make a profit in the market context. the second thing i would add about movies, the concept of digital media literacy, for which i think should be in every school and classroom and the u.s., we're doing it in omaha, by the way. we are doing a pilot program in public schools having them distinguishing between advertising and programming. when you have not -- when it is indicted, children have to understand that. they need the judgment to do a very basic media literacy program can teach them how to think critically about those
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messages. one of the great parts of the digital media literacy program which will be part of the broadband efforts is that it will give children the ability to distinguish between advertisements and traditional programming. if you put all those together, a lot of the challenges that advertising presents children would be dealt with any serious way. >> thank you. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you to all of our witnesses. i will say that i found this a hard issue because i think parents are on the front line and have to make a lot of the decisions. i which there was some technology that would allow them to do that. my first questions will be about that. we also have to be careful about what is on television. it makes a big difference in children's lives.
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a university of minnesota professor did a study showing that a child spends 44 hours in front of a computer screen are television per week. children with the least and come watch the most media with the least supervision. 43% of children under 2 years of age watched television every day. i know that senator pryor offered a bill called the sake of doing act that became -- that became an act this past year. i wonder if any of you have a comment about how you think that is going in terms of parents having available technology if they want to block certain shows? >> çwhen professor looked at te
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v-choip and most parents were unableñr to navigate it. that goes back to the chairman's comment about a button to push to block. sometimes the technology$x it s not transparent. we need to simplify things. >> that is the truth in my household. i had to call my daughter last night t!óigure out how to turn the channels on the television. she is 14. >> i think we're quite close to that reality. i think some leadership from this committee and the fcc will get there more quickly than you think.
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to me, having been around when the v-chip was created, i think it is important. i think the ratings are meaningless. i did not think that matters to parents. i think the key is to marry the technology. too easy to use a sophisticated third-party writings that are more consistent than what the television industry gives out. i think the technology is there. i think we're moving their. the challenge is actually integratingç the interactive
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programming guide. once that is done, any good rating system can be raided. it can be -- can be available. that information is about to be available. we are there. i think all you have to do with the v-chip technology is to keep it open and not restricted to the tv ratings that nothing to the vast majority of parents. it is there. a small amount of leadership and your red button will be a reality sooner than you think. that is when you need it. at the point of decision. let that parents make a decision about what particular program is appropriate. >> thank you. i want to switch to one other topic.
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i am on the agriculture committee where we are working on the nutrition bill for schools. i learned a lot in the last year. i appreciate the recent decision of your networks to advertise the nutritional guidelines for food. thank you for that. where do you think that is going against -- word you think that is going? and what about using television personalities to advertise prut's -- to advertise food. thank you, senator, for your acknowledgment of our efforts. we have adopted strong additional bad loans that have been called the gold standard for the industry. a hearing like this helps us a
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lot because it puts a spotlight on the service that is not well known. it is free and open the air and is made possible by digital television. its advertising-supported. it is a problem forñr us that it is so under recognized not only in the marketplace but in the public committed the. one study had criticism from the broadcasters not that they were not hearing three hours a week but becauseç there was a qualiy issue. we are a broadcaster. we are a commercial broadcast network disturbing quality children's programming we
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surfaced and between audience after preschool and we are not demolished by the public interest community. we need some help in the marketplace and distributionç çthis hearing itself is a wonderful beginning for us. qit validates that there is a commercial model for broadcasters who are willing to provide quality children's programming beyond the requirement and for adopting some guidelines. >> i have gone over my time. >> we work with every food partner and all of the food companies who have taken the pledge and we are working hard and made a commitment not to put our characters on food that is deemed bad for you. we have council meetings every couple of months ring with all of our food advertising partners because everybody is trying to get this right.
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the last thing i would like to say quickly as we do a lot of research with families and parents. parents are on the front line on so many issues. this child of the city issue is complex. what parents want for their kids, they want to raise their kids, want them to be saved, and want to provide for them. with that in mind, we have to figure out how to navigate what they need to help their kids be better kids. thank you. >> thank you, senator klobuchar. i would like to do this with two things and please forgive me. senator, i did something last year. i am passionate about this question. it is not the subject of the day but it willç be of others. i completely messed up.
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i said that the fcc has the authority over in decency and a little bit of nudity and profanity. they do not have any authority over violence. i got that wrong. i apologize to all. we had a shocking incident last year. i had prepared, perhaps over dramatically, a five minute presentation of what violence and promiscuity on movie screens the people could look at. i was doing it in good faith. i was absolutely shot down, mostly by members of my own side of the committee because of the first amendment. there was an automatic nine said
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that because the first amendment exists, you cannot even be talking about this so did not waste my time. i was furious. i was undeterred. it makes me so glad that you took off a few days for your vacation -- a few days from your vacation to be here because we will need you to help us work this fine line, if in fact we are going to do it. i would close in thanking all of you. are there 50 million people watching? i really do not care. it in bolden's -- it embold ens all of us in excess hungrier for action. as i have watchedt( my daughter
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and her husband have grandchildren -- have children, i have watched them over the last several weeks. it occurs to me how little i know about them. çin fact, how little i know abt children and teenagers and what goesi] on inside their minds. it may not have to do with television as much. t(what are the pressures of the modern world that make today's turnout different if they are cut -- today's child different, if they are, then the child of yesterday. if you have any additional comments, i will make sure the committee will come. i do notç think we in our generation understand children.
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we love children. we called them. we do anything. w3but we do not understand whats going insideç those little min. çñrwhat makes them selected ths over that for to do this over that. that is an important background. not that parents are frustrated because they cannot control doing habits, but we have an obligation to start on this. we need to know who these children are. i did not know if these books have been written. i do not know what they are. could you help me on that? not now. okis there light at the end of e tunnel? >> there is always light at the end of the tunnel. >> there are a lot of tunnels and west virginia. i cannot think you enough. i think this is soap -- i cannot thank you you enough.
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i think this is a very important issue. i think we are really onto something incredibly important. that is what i need to hear from our committee members. it has got to be something, there are all ioferent kinds. i want to plow ahead. i greatly think all of you -- i greatly think all of you. power steering is adjourned. -- hour hearing is adjourned. .